Archive for the ‘Key largo’ Category

Where Do You Go On Vacation, When You Live in Key West?

April 29, 2008

Everyone asks us:  Where do you vacation?

When we moved to the Florida Keys, one of the top vacation destinations in Florida, we didn’t think vacations were going to be a problem.  After all, everything the Keys have to offer us is just a short trip by car or boat:

  • Key West – the history, the nightlife, the beaches, the eclectic shopping, the sunset, the bars, the eclectic people
  • the Reef
  • the offshore fishing
  • the Backcountry
  • the water sports
  • nature walks
  • the festivals and holidays
  • snorkeling and SCUBA diving
  • kayaking
  • bicycling
  • the secluded islands
  • the restaurants
  • the bars
  • “swim with the dolphins”
  • SNUBA
  • the Turtle Hospital
  • Marathon
  • Key Largo
  • Bahia Honda Beach
  • Fort Zachary Taylor
  • Sunset Cruises
  • the Dry Tortugas

But residents of this vacation community do run out of things to do.

So we went to Hawaii and visited the Islands.  Yeah they have a bit more sand, and a little less backcountry, but the reef in the Florida Keys, particularly Looe Key, is prettier.  The air temperature and pleasant humidity was identical to Key West, but the ocean water much colder.  So why did we just spend 18 hours in airports and on planes getting to place not much different from back home?

And we went to the Everglades and took the mandatory boat ride through the mangroves.  And the tram ride and walks along the rivers.  But other than the occasional American alligator which don’t gravitate to the Keys, it was a lot like home.  Beautiful wildlife – herons, gulls, hawks and hundreds of other birds and animals – just like home in the Florida Keys.

And then we took the obligatory trip to Orlando, which deserves its own page.  But hardly worth a trip back.

All in all, coming home to Key West and the Florida Keys was the best part of all these vacations away – there’s no place like home!

More at: http://123FloridaKeys.com

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"Are you near the beach?"

April 2, 2008

 
                                                                

When someone asks me “Are you near the beach?” I always respond “Is this your first time visiting the Keys?”  Usually people are taken back by my observation.  Stunned silence follows.  Then they sometimes try to cover with “No, we’ve been to Key West a couple times.”  But a little exploring reveals it was just a short stopover on a cruise ship.  And no, they haven’t really seen the Keys.

 
It’s easy to see, because most people who haven’t explored the Keys, will freely substitute “beach” and “ocean”, assuming one implies the other.  But in the Keys, we have lots of ocean – not as much beach. 
 
Oh sure, there are a few natural sandy beaches: Bahia Honda Key and Marvin Key are gorgeous examples.  But most – including all the Key West beaches – are man-made with sand shipped in from the Bahamas.  Where the islands are left in their natural state, the mangroves protect the shoreline as well as the abundant wild-life and sea life that gives birth around it.
 
The shorelines of the 600 or so islands that make up the Keys is really more beautiful and diverse than any beach in the world!  But it’s not a beach.

 

Key Largo- Sunset, originally uploaded by dbullens.